Mike Fuller (44) has been close to winning many main events in the maverick division at Silver State Raceway. So close he shudders when asked if he's ever won a main event.
Until Saturday night, that answer has been "no," but Fuller drove to his first-ever main event victory, leading nearly all of the 30-lap race from start to finish.
At times Fuller built a comfortable lead over the second place car of Bill Gould (37), who was in a strong battle for position with Mike McMordie (77) and Randy Bauer (25). The race was slowed by two cautions - the first for Don Hill (81), who was hit in the left rear coming out of turn 4 by Russ Allred (2). Allred, instead of backing out of the hit, pushed Hill front-end
first into the wall on the front stretch, where Hill came to a stop. Hill was able to restart and continue the race.
The second caution was for Rick Garmann (74) when his car dropped fluid on the outside line of the track. Garmann pulled in the pits and was through for the night.
On the restart, Fuller maintained the lead in his Short Stop Market-Tesoro Fuel, Capital City Construction and Ken Sumner Excavating-sponsored car. Meanwhile, the battle between Gould, Bauer and McMordie was so intense, it enabled Fuller to keep a five car-length lead. As Fuller took the checkered flag for the win, Bauer, Gould and McMordie pushed their cars so hard coming out of turn 4, each car hit each other, spinning 20 feet after crossing the start/finish line.
"This was a sweet victory," Fuller said. "I made a lot of mistakes last year and gave up several wins. This race, I told myself to relax and just stay calm, and it worked. My crew member, Joe Brooks, has made a positive influence on the team this year. He's been great and we've made a lot of improvements."
Gould finished second while McMordie took third. Rounding out the field were Bauer, Hill, Thomas Oddone (80), Joel Worley (9), Allred and Garmann.
Gould won the maverick trophy dash over McMordie, Hill and Bauer. Fuller won the first heat with Oddone in second and Worley third. Hill won the second heat with McMordie second and Bauer third. Gould won the third heat, Bauer was second and Worley third. McMordie won the fourth heat with Hill second and Fuller third.
In the sportsman division, Scott Bohemier (8) took the main event
win, about six feet in front of Chet Danburg (3x) in second, with Chris Baker (11) making a strong finish for third. Rounding out the field were Henry Hodges Jr. (89), Dave Lester (34), Jim Bawden (25), Gary Chandler (96), Rafael Gomez (2x) and C.J. Bawden.
The only caution of the race came out on lap 2.
On lap 1, C.J. Bawden drove hard into the inside line in turn 1, hitting Lester door-to-door. As the cars were in turn 3 on the same lap, Lester hit the rear of Bawden's car, causing Bawden to get sideways and tap the rear of Lester's car as Lester made a pass. As the cars crossed the line for lap 2, Lester spun and hit the wall in turn 1. Lester was able to restart and continue the race. Also caught up in the melee was Chandler, who suffered mostly cosmetic front-end damage.
"The car felt good tonight," Bohemier said. "It did get a little loose after that caution so I had to be careful. I knew Chet was coming, quickly. I slowed down on that last turn of the last lap, maybe too much, because that's when Chet got under me and came up on the inside. It was close."
Bohemier also won the trophy dash over C.J. Bawden, Danburg and Jim Bawden. Lester won the first heat over Gomez and Hodges. Bohemier won the second heat over Danburg and C.J. Bawden. Baker won the third heat over Jim Bawden and
C.J. Bawden. Hodges won the fourth over Danburg and Lester.
Numerous participants of the Silver Dollar Car Classic came to the track for a burnout competition and driver's choice award from the parade participants. The driver's choice went to a 1969 chopped and channeled Chevy pickup truck.
The winner of the burnout competition was Kelly Enget of Gardnerville, in his 1963 Chevy Nova SS. Enget defeated last year's winner Rick Fields.
The championship points series continues Saturday at Silver State Raceway. Gates open at 5 p.m., qualifying is at 6 with racing to begin at 7:30.
Coming on Aug. 12 is Davey Hamilton's Road To Indy Supermodified Racing League series. Hamilton will race the event along with local driver Eric Silsby in the S&S Motorsports-sponsored car.
For information, call 885-2079 or visit www.silverstateraceway.com.